Friday, February 07, 2014

Review: Three by Kristen Simmons

Posted by

I received this book for free from Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Three by Kristen SimmonsThree by Kristen Simmons
Series: Article 5 #3
Published by Tor Teen on February 11th 2014
Genres: Dystopia, YA
Source: Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group
Buy on Amazon

Kristen Simmons' fast-paced, gripping YA dystopian series continues in Three.

Ember Miller and Chase Jennings are ready to stop running. After weeks spent in hiding as two of the Bureau of Reformation’s most wanted criminals, they have finally arrived at the safe house, where they hope to live a safe and quiet existence.

And all that’s left is smoking ruins.

Devastated by the demolition of their last hope, Ember and Chase follow the only thing left to them—tracks leading away from the wreckage. The only sign that there may have been survivors.

With their high profile, they know they can’t stay out in the open for long. They take shelter in the wilderness and amidst the ruins of abandoned cities as they follow the tracks down the coast, eventually finding refugees from the destroyed safe house. Among them is someone from Chase’s past—someone he never thought he’d see again.

Banding together, they search for a place to hide, aiming for a settlement a few of them have heard about…a settlement that is rumored to house the nebulous organization known as Three. The very group that has provided Ember with a tiny ray of hope ever since she was first forced on the run.

Three is responsible for the huge network of underground safe houses and resistance groups across the country. And they may offer Ember her only chance at telling the world her story.

At fighting back.

I used to say that there was nothing worse than reviewing sequels, but I officially take that statement back because reviewing the third book in a series is definitely worse. There are people who can manage without spoiling anything and I just don’t get how they do it. So be prepared, there will probably be spoilers up ahead. Note: Scratch that, I actually managed to make this spoiler free!!!

What can I say about Three that I haven’t already said about Breaking Point and Article 5 hmm… Well, I can say that the action in this one is pretty constant just like the first two books in the series. The pacing of these books is always a highlight for me because it just never lets up. Even in the calmest of moments there is always a dark cloud overhead that has you anticipating what will come next. Three also maintains the solid world building that I have come to expect from the series. We explore much more of the red zone and see how different colonies of rebels are living their lives.

The best part of Three for me is the way that Ember and Chase’s relationship really grows a lot. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I love how solid the relationship between these two is and how it never becomes the sole focus of the series. You know, through the small moments they get with one another, that they are 100% with each other but it never becomes what they are about. They are still independent and go about their business with others just as they would if they were single. It seems like most romances in YA these days are all consuming and end up defining the characters but I never get that feeling from these two.

Stepping back and looking at this book as a finale is what leaves me a little less than impressed. Don’t get me wrong, I loved the book, but I feel like the culminating action was a little rushed after all of the build-up that we went through. While reading I remember checking the page number when all the finale stuff started being put into play and I was shocked to find that there were a mere 40 pages left. The action of those last sequences were sped through really quickly and some of the motivations for the things that happened were left largely unexplained. I would have liked a bit more of a wrap up here but in the epilogue we do get a sense of finality that I was happy with.

This is by far one of my favourite dystopian series and I am so sad to be saying goodbye to these characters. If you haven’t started this series I think you definitely should. Simmons has a way of snaking her characters into your heart and a way of keeping you on the edge of your seat at all times.


4 Hot Espressos

13 Responses to “Review: Three by Kristen Simmons”

  1. Mary @ BookSwarm

    I’ve only read the first in this series and, though I enjoyed it, I’m not sure I’m going to continue. (I’ve gotten so terrible about abandoning trilogies after reading the first book, even when I like it!) Too bad there wasn’t more finale to this finale but yay for it being a strong addition to the series.

  2. sarabara081 @ Forever 17 Books

    I am terrible at reviewing finale books without spoilers. lol It is so hard! You did a great job though. 🙂 Your thoughts on the relationship between Ember and Chase are exactly how I feel! I am nervous about it being rushed at the end, like you mentioned. I often find books like that, I’ll look at how much is left and be shocked, wondering how it will all fit in what was left. But I’m still excited! It’s been one of my favorite dystopians too and I really hope it remains that way for me when I complete it. Great review, Jenni!

  3. Eileen @ Singing and Reading in the Rain

    aww I definitely agree; reviewing the third book in a series is always the most pressuring because there’s so much to take into consideration and it’s so hard not to spoil something in the book. However, I’m glad that this book lived up to your expectations! I’ve heard many positive things for this series, and I’m definitely for a book that consistently brings the action in a book. also, I’m glad that the relationship between Ember and Chase was still able to progress even though Three’s the last book and romances are usually done by the last book. Fantastic review, Jenni! <33

  4. Pili

    I really loved Article 5 but I still haven’t read Breaking Point. Obviously I now have to read Breaking Point and Three back to back when it comes out!

  5. kimbacaffeinate

    I am starting this on Monday for review, and when you said spoilers I yelled eep and scrolled down to see how you rated it. I am glad as it looks like you enjoyed it and I will come back after mine is written to see how we compare..LOL

  6. Nick @ Nick's Book Blog

    I’m finally commenting. I hope you’re happy with that little stunt you pulled on Twitter earlier. *glares at Jenni*

    Anyways, I’m really glad you enjoyed this one. This is going to be one of my favorite series and it’s definitely one I’m going to come back and re-read it. I understand what you mean about this not being that impressive. I actually ended up loving it probably because of how many shitty series endings I’ve read this year. 3 different series have ended so badly for me, I want to burn them and never ever hear of them again. So, when this came out and it actually ended on a good note, I had a ton of love for it.
    I’m happy you liked the romance though. I think that’s one of my favorite parts of this finale. The barn scene? I was swooning pretty hard.
    Lovely review, Jenni! 🙂

  7. Melliane

    you’re right, I don’t think I can review sequels without spoiling. Almost impossible… I just hope it never was a problemfor people who haven’t read the books before. it’s never a problem for me because I don’t remember anything. But well in any case this one sounds nice. I remember great reviews about the first one

  8. Henrietta @ Leisure Reads

    I haven’t started reading this series but it’s nice knowing you enjoyed the ending of the trilogy even though there were things that weren’t fully explained. I liked the sound of the character growth. Thanks for sharing!